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Traveling — or even being on a business trip — affords a certain feeling of freedom. You’re in a new city, a new bed, you don’t know anyone and most every experience is new. The excitement of this fresh place and perspective can be dampened just a bit, however, if you’re someone who gets antsy and wants to get out and see things on your own terms.
Ensuring your opportunities to do just that, some luxury properties have paired with top automotive brands to make their most plush models available to VIP (and in some cases, all) guests.
Imagine spending a week at the year-old Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina — where Amy Schumer holed up while shooting Snatched, and Kourtney Kardashian and Katie Lowes have called the Presidential Suite home. There’s no shortage of ways to spend your time, from seeking out sea turtles beyond the beach to standup paddle boarding, doing vinyasas, having massages in open-air spa hales, noshing on perfectly prepared fresh fish and trying your hand at making haku leis from just-picked tropical flowers. But still, there’s a whole island out there worth a peek, too. Fortunately, those booking the Presidential or Penthouse suites get a Tesla Model X or S for their entire stay, while those booking specialty suites at published rates can use one of these high-tech space-agey cars for up to 48 hours, the ideal amount of time for a day drive up to, say, the North Shore (check out Brian Grazer’s favorite surf break, Pipeline, from the top of a pillbox hike), Waikiki’s iconic sands or Honolulu for some shopping. Not to be left out, kids can also spin around in Radio Flyer’s Tesla Model S.
While the whole family can tool around in Teslas on Oahu, there are also ways to get out and experience what’s beyond the property on the mainland, too. Hollywood’s new Dream hotel has super luxe Lincolns — the new Continental Black Label, MKZ Black Label and Navigator, to be exact — awaiting VIP guests staying in suites. The refreshed Continental, a favorite vehicle of Frank Lloyd Wright in the ‘40s, and Marilyn Monroe and Dean Martin in the ‘60s, is now sleekly modern with a timeless look that’s been updated with sumptuous seats and even hidden-away doorhandles that are integrated into the chrome, making a design statement. It’s a stately way to navigate Los Angeles, from an outing to Griffith Park for a hike to a trip downtown for dinner at the latest new foodie opening (if not staying put for meals at Beauty & Essex or the Highlight Room on the rooftop, a see-and-be-seen scene). Lincoln has a similar partnership with Montauk’s always-buzzing Surf Lodge.
In Beverly Hills, guests who spring for the hotel’s Escape to Xanadu package — which comprises a jaunt to an oceanfront Malibu estate once owned by Olivia Newton-John along with outdoor activities and al fresco lunch — may opt to drive themselves there in a Rolls-Royce Dawn, with the top down, naturally. Others staying in town, in a suite, may drive the hotel’s fleet of Infinitis.
Other appealing experiences to test out an exciting ride include San Diego’s Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa’s program giving guests up to four hours per day in either a 2017 Porsche 718 Boxster convertible or a 2017 Cayenne, which could take them to La Jolla’s beaches, through Temecula’s wine country or perhaps to the Gaslamp Quarter downtown for a flashy evening out. At Auberge du Soleil in Napa, time with their new-model Mercedes-Benz (which include the S 550 and GLS 450) is limited to three hours, but those who are already Mercedes owners receive perks including $100 resort credit, room upgrade (if available) and two $50 spa certificates. For short drives of up to four hours along Southern California’s picturesque coastline — from Palos Verdes’ Terranea Resort — guests can hop in a new Lexus sedan, SUV or hybrid, or book a Terranea Drive Series program that comes with GPS-guided experiences (think picnic lunches, VIP shopping and secluded beach walks) and a stay in an ultra-plush Shearwater Suite (these bookings include a complimentary Lexus for the entire stay).
For more wine-region exploration, the superluxe Cadillac CT6 sedan is available to all guests of Carneros Resort and Spa, who only need to reserve the vehicle at the front desk and can travel up to a 50-mile radius from the property for a full day. Of course, if lots of vino tasting is on the schedule, it might be wise to hop a ride in the Escalade, courtesy of the resort. (The Broadmoor and Gurney’s Montauk have similar opportunities, too.)
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